Smash Mouth is an American rock band from San Jose, California. The band was formed in 1994, and was originally composed of Steve Harwell (lead vocals), Kevin Coleman (drums), Greg Camp (guitar), and Paul De Lisle (bass). They are known for their songs "Walkin' on the Sun" (1997), "All Star" (1999), and "Then The Morning Comes" (1999), as well as a cover of The Monkees' "I'm a Believer" (2001).
|Origin||San Jose, California, U.S.|
The band adopted retro styles covering several decades of popular music. They have also performed numerous covers of popular songs, including War's "Why Can't We Be Friends?", Simple Minds' "Don't You (Forget About Me)", ? & the Mysterians' "Can't Get Enough of You Baby", the Beatles' "Getting Better", and "I Wan'na Be Like You" from The Jungle Book. They also composed two songs for the South Korean animated film Pororo, The Racing Adventure: "Beside Myself" and "Everything Just Crazy".
1990–97: Formation and Fush Yu MangEdit
Smash Mouth's roots trace back to 1990 when Steve Harwell and Kevin Coleman met. Smash Mouth was then formed in 1994 by Harwell, who had formerly played in a rap group called F.O.S. (Freedom of Speech). Coleman, who was Harwell's manager, knew guitarist Greg Camp and bassist Paul De Lisle, who had both played in a local punk band, and introduced the three musicians to each other. They began rehearsing together, along with Kevin Coleman as drummer. They soon developed into a band, and named themselves Smashmouth, an American football term. During their early years, the band played largely rock music.
The band's first publicity came when a demo of the song "Nervous in the Alley" was played by a San Jose radio station, KOME. Soon after, Interscope Records signed the band, and the group's debut album, Fush Yu Mang, was released in 1997, featuring another member: the keyboardist Michael Klooster. Also, upon signing to Interscope Records, the band changed their name from Smashmouth to Smash Mouth. The album eventually went double platinum led by the band's first major single "Walkin' on the Sun". The singles "The Fonz" and a cover of "Why Can't We Be Friends" from the 1998 Kevin Bacon film Wild Things were also subsequently released.
1998–2005: Rise to fame, Astro Lounge, Smash Mouth, and Get the Picture?Edit
The band's second album, Astro Lounge, was released in 1999 and marked a change in direction, as it had less of the previous ska influence and more of a pop sound. It led to more publicity for the band, and ended up being one of the most critically acclaimed albums from the group. Supported by the hit singles "All Star" (which was featured in several film soundtracks, most notably the first Shrek film although the official music video references Mystery Men) and "Then the Morning Comes", Astro Lounge was eventually certified as triple platinum.
Also in 1999, The East Bay Sessions was released as a collection of early songs. Shortly after the release of the album, drummer Kevin Coleman left the band due to back problems. He was initially replaced by Michael Urbano, who was quickly replaced by Mitch Marine for the tour supporting Astro Lounge, who was subsequently replaced by Michael Urbano at the conclusion of the tour.
In 2001, Smash Mouth covered the Monkees' hit song "I'm a Believer". It was featured on both the soundtrack for Shrek (along with "All Star") and their self-titled album. The album sold fewer copies than the band's earlier works, eventually being certified gold. Also in 2001, the group appeared as themselves in the climactic scene of the film Rat Race.
In 2003, Get the Picture? was released, featuring the singles "You Are My Number One", "Hang On" and "Always Gets Her Way". Smash Mouth was dropped from Interscope shortly after the release of Get the Picture?. That same year, the band performed a cover of the Sherman Brothers song "I Wanna Be Like You" for the animated film The Jungle Book 2.
2005–11: New label, fluctuating lineup, Summer Girl, and MagicEdit
Following the band's signing to Universal Records, Smash Mouth released the greatest hits compilation All Star Smash Hits in 2005. The album contains some more popular songs from previous Smash Mouth albums, as well as songs from soundtrack albums which were not on the band's own releases. On certain networks and time slots, the album was advertised as having 18 tracks, including an edited version of "Flo" and "Beer Goggles". Smash Mouth played at Gumby's Birthday Celebration in August 2005.
Smash Mouth's fifth studio album, originally to be titled Old Habits, was recorded in 2005 and expected to be released in early 2006. The band had said that the album was much more like the ska punk featured on Fush Yu Mang and The East Bay Sessions. In September 2005, the band performed what was tentatively going to be the album's first single, "Getaway Car", on Last Call with Carson Daly. The album was delayed many times, in the hope of gaining publicity with Harwell's appearance on the reality show The Surreal Life. Smash Mouth returned to the studio intent on improving the record. Old Habits was shelved, replaced by Summer Girl, which included some remixed Old Habits tracks as well as new songs. After being delayed in much the same way Old Habits was for several months, the album was released on September 19, 2006. Smash Mouth let Sony Pictures use much of their music from Summer Girl and other songs for the movie Zoom, whose opening titles credit the film's music to the band.
Before the release of Summer Girl, drummer Michael Urbano left the band without warning on February 14, 2006 due to creative differences. He was initially replaced by former drummer Mitch Marine, and then by Jason Sutter, best known for his work with American Hi-Fi and the Rembrandts. The band released their new album, Summer Girl, later that year. In early 2007, one year after joining the band, Sutter left Smash Mouth to play drums for former Soundgarden and Audioslave frontman Chris Cornell; fill-in drummer Marine returned to Smash Mouth.
Greg Camp left the band in the summer of 2008. Smash Mouth recruited Leroy Miller to play guitar. Leroy left in 2009 and Camp returned to the band, but in 2011 Camp left once again and this time the band recruited Sean Hurwitz. Hurwitz stayed until 2012, and was replaced by Mike Krompass. Later in 2012, Hurwitz returned. In 2009 Mitch Marine left once again and was replaced by Urbano, who left again after only one year in 2010, and was replaced by Marine once again. Marine left yet again after a brief spell in 2010 and was replaced by Randy Cooke. Cooke was briefly replaced by Jason Sutter in 2011, then Charlie Paxson.
In June 2011, a writer at Something Awful offered $20 if the band's lead singer, Steve Harwell, would eat 24 eggs. Others on the site and on Twitter began offering additional sums, eventually targeted to various charities. In July 2011, Harwell accepted the challenge if fans could gather pledges of $10,000 for St. Jude's Children's Hospital. The fundraising goal was reached in less than a week's time. A self-styled "reality TV fan," Harwell requested that his friend celebrity chef Guy Fieri prepare the eggs. The event was held at Johnny Garlic's restaurant, in Dublin, California, on October 11, 2011. With about 150 people attending, Harwell was able to finish the eggs with the help of audience members as well as the San Jose Sharks mascot, Sharkie. $15,000 was raised for charity.
2012–2019: Magic and live albumEdit
After parting ways with Universal Records and signing with 429 Records, Smash Mouth released their sixth studio album titled Magic, on September 4, 2012. The album was primarily produced by new band member Mike Krompass. The first single, also entitled "Magic", debuted on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart at No. 22. The band spent the rest of 2012 touring behind the new project as well as promoting the release of their musical book of food recipes and things of the like — Recipes from the Road. Cooke left permanently toward the end of 2012, replaced by Paxson. In 2013 the band took part in the Under the Sun tour with Gin Blossom and Sugar Ray. Paxson left in July during the tour, and was initially going to be replaced by a returning Cooke; however, he was replaced by Sutter once again. Tod Burr, former drum tech of Def Leppard and drummer of Merle Jagger, came on board in 2012 as drum and keyboard tech of Smash Mouth.
On February 1, 2013, Smash Mouth headlined the AutoNation Coast to Coast rebranding event (which combined all AutoNation dealerships into a single brand) at Wayne Huizenga Park in Fort Lauderdale, Florida with Michela Paige from Season 3 of The Voice. The event also served as a final round in the AutoNation Culture of Caring Contest.
On October 6, 2014, Smash Mouth composed two songs for the English version of the South Korean animated film, Pororo, The Racing Adventure including "Beside Myself", and "Everything Just Crazy" which plays at the end credits.
On June 14, 2015, Smash Mouth was playing a set at the Taste of Fort Collins food festival in Fort Collins, Colorado, when singer Steve Harwell broke from his set and went into an angry three-minute, expletive-laden tirade, threatening to beat the audience members responsible for hitting him with bread. The band played the opening chords of "All Star" throughout a significant portion of Harwell's rant. The incident was covered by major media outlets, including TMZ, Gawker, and USA Today. Harwell later apologized for the incident in an interview with The Herald-Mail. Event organizer Jason Ornstein explained that he asked Harwell if he wanted him to have the DJs make an announcement instructing the crowd not to throw bread but according to Ornstein, Harwell "stormed on [stage] and took matters into his own hands". He continued "It wasn't like anyone was going to be getting hurt by throwing bread up in the air ... We just had to laugh at it, because he just really made a fool of himself."
In May 2016, Smash Mouth released their first live album titled Playlist: The Very Best of Smash Mouth through Sony Music. The recordings were harvested from shows in Rapid City, South Dakota and Manila.
2016 saw the band gain a new member in Sam Eigen and the return of Cooke. Eigen is a long-time friend of both Steve Harwell and Paul De Lisle, and has played with Alanis Morissette, Janet Jackson, and John Fogerty. He can also be heard playing guitar on several of Harwell's solo recordings over the years.
Greg Camp rejoined Smash Mouth in early 2018. An acoustic re-recording of Smash Mouth's first album, Fush Yu Mang, funded through PledgeMusic was released in 2018 for the album's 20th anniversary.
On November 1, 2018, Smash Mouth released the single "Unity". It features hip-hop artists Kool Keith and Darryl McDaniels of Run-DMC. They then toured Australia in the same year during November to sell out crowds around the country, which consisted of a mix of theater, festival and pub shows. During the Arlie Beach Festival of Music in Queensland, Steve Harwell became ill and had to leave the stage. However, Nicky Bomba, Frankie J Holden, Wilbur Wilde from Melbourne Ska Orchestra and the remainder of Smash Mouth continued the set without him. Harwell recovered the next day and the Australian tour continued without any further incidents.
2020-present: Further projects and Harwell's departureEdit
On August 8, 2020, the band performed at the 2020 Sturgis Rally and vocalist Harwell said things such as "fuck that COVID shit" during the performance. A report from the IZA Institute of Labor Economics later cited the event as being a superspreading event.
In October 2021, the band performed at The Big Sip beer and wine festival in Bethel, New York. Harwell appeared to be intoxicated, threatening audience members and performing what looked like a Nazi salute. Following the performance, Harwell announced his retirement due to ongoing health issues. Prior to Harwell's last show, the band was already performing with a substitute singer ostensibly filling in while Harwell dealt with his health issues.
Former touring musicians
- Spanos, Brittany (June 12, 2019). "Somebody Once Told Me: An Oral History of Smash Mouth's 'All Star'". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on December 8, 2019. Retrieved May 24, 2020.
- Blashill, Pat (November 13, 2001). "Smash Mouth: Album Reviews". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on October 1, 2007. Retrieved May 24, 2020.
- Collar, Matt. "The Gift of Rock – Smash Mouth | Songs, Reviews, Credits". AllMusic. Archived from the original on July 22, 2020. Retrieved May 24, 2020.
- "Picks and Pans Review: Smash Mouth". People. January 21, 2002. Archived from the original on October 27, 2021. Retrieved October 20, 2021.
- Erlewine, Stephen Thomas (July 8, 1997). "Fush Yu Mang – Smash Mouth | Songs, Reviews, Credits". AllMusic. Archived from the original on July 22, 2020. Retrieved May 24, 2020.
- Semley, John (December 17, 2012). "Smash Mouth wrote a song called "Justin Bieber"". Now Toronto. Archived from the original on October 27, 2021. Retrieved October 20, 2021.
- "Picks and Pans Review: Astro Lounge". People. July 19, 1999. Archived from the original on October 27, 2021. Retrieved October 20, 2021.
- Schaffner, Lauryn (October 12, 2021). "Smash Mouth Singer Steve Harwell Announces Retirement Due to Health Issues". Loudwire. Archived from the original on October 13, 2021. Retrieved October 20, 2021.
- "Supposed interview with Steve Harwell of Smash mouth". NY Rock. Archived from the original on December 27, 2014. Retrieved April 23, 2014.
- Kane, Jenny (May 19, 2015). "Smash Mouth, Toad the Wet Sprocket talk BBQ, blues". Reno Gazette Journal. Archived from the original on January 13, 2022. Retrieved October 20, 2021.
- "Biography". AllMusic.
- "Yahoo Music – Exclusive New Music and Music Videos". Music.yahoo.com. April 20, 2011. Archived from the original on November 13, 2006. Retrieved April 23, 2014.
- "Smash Mouth Tries to Escape ‘Shrek’ at Alumni Concert" Archived September 20, 2019, at the Wayback Machine. The Emory Wheel, by Naomi Keusch Baker | Sep 28, 2016
- "SheKnows gets to know Smash Mouth". Archived from the original on December 30, 2008.
- "Smash Mouth: Still San Jose’s All Stars" Archived September 20, 2019, at the Wayback Machine. The Mercury News, By Paul Freeman | June 29, 2011
- Something Awful, June 4, 2011, "Smash Mouth: Please Eat the Eggs Archived July 7, 2011, at the Wayback Machine" Retrieved July 11, 2011.
- TMZ.com, July 6, 2011, "Smash Mouth Singer – The Kobayashi of EGGS!!! Archived July 8, 2011, at the Wayback Machine". Accessed July 6, 2011.
- Yahoo! News, July 7, 2011, "A Rock Band Accepts a Strange Challenge... Archived February 22, 2019, at the Wayback Machine". July 11, 2011.
- Sarah Anne Hughes (July 7, 2011). "Guy from Smash Mouth to smash eggs in mouth for charity". Washington Post. Archived from the original on November 12, 2012. Retrieved July 7, 2011.
- Popdust.com, July 11, 2011, "Official: Smash Mouth Will Eat The Eggs Archived July 17, 2011, at the Wayback Machine" Retrieved July 11, 2011.
- Votta, Rae (July 12, 2011). "Smash Mouth Will Eat The Eggs, Harwell Wants A Celeb Chef To Cook Them". The Huffington Post. Archived from the original on July 15, 2011. Retrieved July 12, 2011.
- "Smash Mouth singer had egg on his face". San Jose Mercury News. Archived from the original on August 27, 2016. Retrieved October 11, 2011.
- "Smash Mouth – Chart history". Billboard. Archived from the original on June 19, 2015. Retrieved April 23, 2014.
- "Review: Gin Blossoms, Smash Mouth and Sugar Ray, Tulsa, OK" Archived September 21, 2019, at the Wayback Machine. Real Rock News, August 19, 2013, by Scott A. Smith
- TMZ Staff. "Smash Mouth Singer: Quit Tossing Bread At Us... You 'Punk Bitches!'" Archived July 15, 2015, at the Wayback Machine, TMZ, June 15, 2015. Retrieved July 30, 2015
- "Hey now! Smash Mouth singer flips as fans throw bread" Archived January 4, 2018, at the Wayback Machine, USA Today, June 15, 2015. Retrieved July 30, 2015
- Conaboy, Kelly. "Smash Mouth Singer Threatens To "Beat the Fuck" out of Bread Thrower" Archived July 25, 2015, at the Wayback Machine, Gawker, June 15, 2015. Retrieved July 30, 2015
- Schroeder, Audra. "Smash Mouth singer goes ballistic after being pelted with loaves of bread" Archived September 23, 2015, at the Wayback Machine, Daily Dot, June 15, 2015. Retrieved July 30, 2015
- "Smash Mouth Singer Flips Out After Someone Pelts Him with Bread" Archived September 22, 2015, at the Wayback Machine, Magnetic Magazine, June 15, 2015. Retrieved July 30, 2015
- "All that glitters is still gold for Smash Mouth". The Herald-Mail. Archived from the original on March 2, 2016. Retrieved July 30, 2015.
- Sexton, Josie. "Taste organizer: Smash Mouth lead made a fool of himself" Archived January 28, 2022, at the Wayback Machine, The Coloradoan, June 16, 2015. Retrieved July 30, 2015
- "ABOUT". Smashmouth.com. Archived from the original on September 27, 2020. Retrieved December 20, 2019.
- "Get the show on: Smash Mouth comes to Oklahoma for free Newcastle performance" Archived June 16, 2018, at the Wayback Machine. By Becky Carman, The Oklahoman, June 15, 2018
- "Smash Mouth: Smash Mouth Acoustic Recording". PledgeMusic.com. Archived from the original on January 1, 2017. Retrieved January 10, 2017.
- "Smash Mouth, Darryl 'DMC' McDaniels and Kool Keith Release 'UNITY'". BroadwayWorld.com. November 1, 2018. Archived from the original on February 13, 2019. Retrieved November 2, 2018.
- "Smash Mouth Singer Ends Australian Festival Performance Due To Illness". Musicfeeds.com.au. November 12, 2018. Archived from the original on February 13, 2019. Retrieved February 12, 2019.
- Elliott, Josh K. (September 9, 2020). "Sturgis biker rally with Smash Mouth was 'superspreading event,' report says". Global News. Archived from the original on January 28, 2022. Retrieved July 11, 2021.
- Barton, Monika (October 12, 2021). "Smash Mouth singer accused of doing Nazi salute in shocking footage from 'chaotic' gig". Newshub. Archived from the original on January 28, 2022. Retrieved October 12, 2021.
- Brown, August (October 11, 2021). "Smash Mouth singer slurs words, curses fans at 'chaotic' live show". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on October 11, 2021. Retrieved October 12, 2021.
- Aswad, Jem (October 12, 2021). "Smash Mouth Singer Steve Harwell Retires After Disoriented New York Concert". Variety. Archived from the original on January 28, 2022. Retrieved October 13, 2021.
- Helman, Peter (October 6, 2021). "Smash Mouth Quietly Hired New Singer While Steve Harwell Recovers From Heart Issues". Stereogum. Archived from the original on October 8, 2021. Retrieved October 13, 2021.